Patients contracted the deadly meningitis after being injected in their spine with a preservative-free steroid called methylprednisolone acetate that was contaminated by a fungus. The steroid is used to treat pain and inflammation.
Health officials say around 75 medical facilities in 23 states received the contaminated products, which were manufactured by New England Compounding Center in Framingham, Massachusetts.
NECC voluntarily recalled three lots of the injectible steroid last week. As a precaution, the Food and Drug Administration is asking doctors, clinics, and consumers to stop using any products made by NECC.
The FDA is investigating the scope and cause of the outbreak.